If the first urgent care center recently opened in your neighborhood, or if you are otherwise new to the concept of urgent care, then you might not quite understand when this is the right place to go for medical care. Urgent care centers are intended to treat medical issues that are urgent, but not abject emergencies. You would not go there for a suspected heart attack or stroke, for example. But here are four common ailments and concerns that do bring people into urgent care.
Sometimes a case of the common cold, flu, or COVID-19 gets bad enough that you want medical care, but you don't want to wait a few days to see your primary care doctor. A trip to the urgent care center is in order. These clinics can do testing for the flu and for COVID-19, so you can find out what you have. They can also administer treatments such as antiviral drugs, decongestants, and pain relievers.
Cuts and Burns
Maybe you cut yourself in the kitchen, or perhaps you burn yourself on a hot pan. These types of cooking injuries are quite common. People used to go to the emergency room for them, but most of them aren't quite serious to warrant that level of care. As long as you can slow the bleeding by putting pressure on the wound, and as long as your burn is not black, you can get the care you need at an urgent care center. They can prescribe antibiotics, give stitches, and bandage burns appropriately.
Sprains and Strains
If you sprain your ankle playing soccer, or you strain an elbow playing tennis, the urgent care center is a good first place to head. They can evaluate the injury and give you a good, basic understanding of what's wrong. If it is more serious, they might refer you to an orthopedist, but they can give you a basic splint and pain relievers for minor sprains.
A potential concussion needs to be taken seriously. If you hit your head and experience any sort of dizziness, headaches, and fatigue, you should head to an urgent care clinic to be evaluated for a concussion. They can provide care for minor to moderate concussions.
Hopefully, this article has given you a better idea of the kind of work urgent care centers do. If you run into any of the problems above, don't hesitate to pay them a visit. For more information, contact a company like South Shore Health.